Tag Archives: PAD Challenge

Twenty-One and Done

heartbreak

I’m done with the Writer’s Digest poem a day challenge after writing 21 poems, most of which I’m unhappy with. It’s not the same as Nanowrimo, where you have a giant mass of text to edit once you’re finished writing 50K words in November. I’ve done that, and it’s worked out well, resulting in novels. I’ve also failed at it a few times too.

But poetry is a different animal. Yes, I can edit a poem, but usually if I dislike it overall, things won’t change much in that regard after rearranging some words. So now I have maybe 6 poems I like and 15 I feel meh about. I’m not going to redo them; I’ll just move on and avoid this challenge again. I never had any intention of creating a chapbook ~ I simply wanted to write a bunch of poems.

I don’t find the WD vague prompts helpful in general. For example, today was love/anti-love. I’ve written a million love poems and anti-love poems when I’ve been motivated in that direction from stuff in my own life. But “write a love poem” isn’t a prompt, in my opinion. A prompt is more like Colleen’s “the gray scarf,” which is an image, something concrete, to help generate a scene and/or a feeling. Maybe the gray scarf was worn by a lover or by someone who rejected me. I can see a gray scarf fluttering in the winter wind as his harsh words of goodbye hang in the air like icicles.

See? I’m already excited about this possible poem!

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Epiphany

Woman hat sunflower field summer

One glorious morning,
The epiphany burst into being:
It is not my responsibility
To hold onto toxic friendship,
To nurture malicious gossip,
Or to commiserate
With narcissistic ranting.
Emotional housecleaning
Is the key to my sanity;
I gather the fuss bunnies
And sweep them out the door.
Whatever button triggers you
Doesn’t need to trigger me;
Peaceful solitude is more
Desirable than any excitement
Generated by drama queens.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 21: button, gather, hold, not, sweep, toxic).

The Nightly Fight

scary skeleton

She fights against the glowing gloom.
Monsters loom and crawl and creep;
Shadows swirl upon the stair–
She spins and whirls, but nothing’s there.
She tries to will herself to sleep,
Breathes the cloying midnight air.
Knuckles tense, she grips the sheet,
Wonders at this dark despair.
Can she learn to tame her thoughts–
What magic potion might exist
To end this conflict once and all?
Oh lord, could there be a glimpse
Of freedom from this foul attack?
Please, she prays, cut me some slack,
Remove this stain upon my brain,
Repair this hellish mental crack
That allows devils space to reign.
Soon faint light curls within
The bars of her tiny window,
And the cycle begins once again.

Written for the Sunday Whirl Wordle 579 (spin, creep, loom, whirl, crack, light, grip, stain, curl, glimpse, slack, lord, wonder) and the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 20: conflict).

The Myth of You

Woman offering ghost spirit

They say you exist,
But I have no proof…
I did catch a glimpse
Of a face in the mist,
A voice in a dream–
They swear it’s the truth.
An object of adoration,
A subject of myth,
You inspire dedication–
But details are vague,
A kaleidoscope twist.
You’re the sacred ideal,
Aspirational glory,
The ultimate bliss.
Sacrifice for a steal–
You star in every story,
So hard to resist.
I confess I still pray
I’ll find you one day
And all promises made
Delivered like Christmas.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 19: The Myth of _____).

Funny Like A Clown?

Clown

I craved romance–
Roses and wine.
He preferred humor
With a punchline.
I wrote a routine,
Bought a clown wig,
Invited him to watch
My first stand-up gig.
He was indifferent,
Never clapped once;
Then he disappeared
And I felt like a dunce.
I saw him last night
With a girl dressed in lace;
He ordered champagne,
A smile on his face.
This morning she said
His sign was all wrong—
He was heartbroken,
But I laughed so long.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 18: funny).

Risky Business

fractal heart blue

They asked me last night
If I believed in love at first sight,
And to everyone’s surprise,
I said yes.
I was the only one
Who had faith in such crazy,
But when I looked in your eyes,
There was never a maybe.
I put it all on the line,
Risked my heart like a fool,
Soaked up all your lies.
There was something about you—
Your charming, smarmy smile,
That kiss on the beach,
Your glacial blue gaze,
Your heart out of reach.
I didn’t need to look twice,
Didn’t need months of days
To understand my needs;
I put it all on the table,
Handed you the keys.
And given the end game
Of an ocean of tears,
The spiral of depression,
Tormenting for years,
Would I do it again?
I’d like to write no,
But…
My treacherous soul
Is weaker than my pen.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 17: risk).

Panel

Chocolate spiders Halloween

Panel of experts
Definitively agree
You’re creepier than
Any Halloween nightmare
Haunting victims on Elm Street

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Tanka for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 16: panel).

Dance to Forget

rainbow dance planets kaleidoscope

She dances to forget,
To empty her mind
Of painful imaginings.
She swirls and she dips,
Twirls and pirouettes,
Hoping to shake loose
Thoughts of all she’s lost.
She focuses on the now,
The beat and the melody,
Connects to this moment,
And discards yesterdays.
She understands too well
It’s a temporary respite;
When the music’s over
She’ll remember everything.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 15: thought/thoughtless) and the Procrastinators Five Word Challenge (dance connect remember forget understand).

Blank Story

Planets universe world

The empty page beckons–
Fill me with words,
Create a universe,
Give me a hero!
Sentences appear
In a jangled tangle,
Forming black holes
Of plot points;
Protagonists burn out
Like comets;
The arc is a circle
And I’m back where I began.
My favorite device
Is control-A-delete:
It’s easier to start over
Than to fix something broken.
The blank story remains
The perfect story,
Unwritten
In invisible ink.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 14: _____ story).

Forest of Stars

Beltane by Sharon Ellis OCMA art

A forest of stars
Glitters under the night sun
The song of your heart
Carries music through the trees
Echoes of a love long gone

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Tanka written for the Writer’s Digest 2022 PAD Chapbook Challenge (Day 13: ekphrastic). I chose to base my poetry on Beltrane, 2014, by Sharon Ellis, which I had the pleasure to view last month at the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA).